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Launch of Amazon Pharmacy is illegal, Chemist body warns Amazon

The letter is also addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, top ministers, and government officials.

SNS | New Delhi |

Chemist body, All India Organization of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD) has written a letter to Amazon chief executive officer Jeff Bezos, Amit Agarwal, senior vice-president and country manager saying that their plan to launch an online drug business in Bengaluru is illegal, reports stated on Saturday.

The letter is also addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, top ministers, and government officials.

In the letter, the association cited several laws and regulations like the Drugs and Cosmetic Rules and Drugs and Cosmetics Act. Along with this, the association also attached a copy of Delhi High court’s verdict that had put a stay on online pharmacies.

“We have also given you enough evidence above to prove our point. We also have a full dossier ready on this subject and entering this space can bring on legal implications which can bring disrepute to Amazon’s name,” Mint quoted the association that comprises 8,50,000 members as saying.

Amazon has launched Amazon Pharmacy in southern Bengaluru city. The service will allow customers to order prescription-based medication, over-the-counter medicines, basic health devices and Ayurveda medication from certified sellers.

E-pharmacies need to register with the Central Licencing Authority for selling prescription drugs online. Amazon India is expected to partner with licence holders for offering the pharmacy service.

Healthtech start-ups like 1mg, PharmEasy and Medlife have seen strong growth in the past few months as people turned to online platforms to order their medicines while maintaining social distancing amid the pandemic.

Amazon started its pharmaceutical retail business in 2017 in the U.S. The following year it introduced its US-based home delivery drug startup PillPack.